Tears, Fears and Hormones – agency of emotions in socio-material practices

Stine Willum Adrian, Astrid Jespersen

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In the consultation at the GP the doctor touches a patient’s patch of skin resulting in a tear falling down her chin. And in the consultation, at the fertility clinic, the side effects of the hormonal treatment of the women is discussed vividly as something that makes her loose her temper to a degree that her husband is better off taking extra hours at work.

These are empirical incidences from our ethnographic fieldworks at general practitioners and fertility clinics. Both studies challenged our initial theoretical position inspired by Actor Network Theory and STS. Within STS there has previously been very little focus on how we can account for emotions when technologies are at use. However, our rich empirical material simply called for a development, of theoretical resources that could account for emotions as active parts of socio-material or material-discursive practices.

In this presentation we will discuss how we took up this empirical and theoretical challenges in our work. In different ways we developed analytical frameworks theoretically informed by Arlie Hochschild, Charis Thompson and Karen Barad all of whom might inspire an analysis of emotions and their agency in socio-material settings.
Original languageEnglish
Publication date26 Apr 2012
Publication statusPublished - 26 Apr 2012
EventFeminist Materialisms - Københavns Universitet, København, Denmark
Duration: 26 Apr 201227 Apr 2012


ConferenceFeminist Materialisms
LocationKøbenhavns Universitet

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